When most people shadow box they simply see it as a way to warm up, but where you will see the most results is when you began to slow it down. Virgil Hill a multi time boxing champion and trainer, is said to have his student’s shadow box so slowly that it is painful! As described in a previous post, the best way to learn a skill is to go slow.
A majority of the time, when working the bag or shadow boxing there is no one coaching you. So what should you do?…….Be your own Coach!
A great tool for shadow boxing is a mirror. Most fight enthusiasts can tell the difference between good technique, and bad even if they don’t know why. Looking in a mirror gives you the opportunity to scrutinize and correct what you are doing wrong in real time. If you do not have a mirror a little focus is necessary. Start by scanning your body while moving slowly through technique.
Things you should ask yourself while shadow boxing:
I am I balanced throughout the technique?
I am I protected throughout the technique?
Is there any wasted movement?
Shadow boxing should not be a mindless exercise, you must consciously analyze technique, slow it down, correct it, and then speed it back up again. I typically spend 20 minutes each morning shadow boxing. I do not like setting a timer for short rounds, I believe this messes up the mental focus and flow. This type of shadow boxing when done correctly is almost meditative. Once you lose track of time focusing on the nuances of a jab, only then will you know that you are shadow boxing correctly. Shadow boxing slowly will not only improve your technique, but will also let you find and create new patterns and combinations. Try it out and let me know what you think!
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